Environmental, Social and Governance report
The organization has a renewed focus on its social and environmental impact on the planet. We have an obligation to manage our organization in ways that are socially responsible and help to create a sustainable environment and, to this end, 2022 saw continued focus on environmental, social and governance (ESG) practices.
To help with our ESG profile, gap analysis and communication strategy, we engaged a leading ESG assessment and advisory service that specializes in developing strong, proportionate and educational sustainability plans. As a starting point we completed a detailed assessment of our current ESG positioning, which provided a solid benchmark against which to measure our actions.
Our people are our most critical asset and play a central role in bringing this to life. With this in mind, we also asked all permanent colleagues to take part in an ESG survey, establishing an essential feedback loop and laying the foundation for a stronger community, committed to further action. We were thrilled at the participation rate and at the willingness of so many to be further involved. The feedback has been extremely useful, offering up ideas for improvement and suggestions for fresh action.
“We have an obligation to manage our organization in ways that are socially responsible and help to create a sustainable environment ”
As an employer, we are conscious that, against a background of climate change and broader economic and political instability, many individuals are deciding that they will not compromise on their own priorities by working for a company whose values do not align with their own, or that fails to provide the support and flexibility to live a balanced life. In 2022, this manifested itself in continued high levels of activity in the recruitment market, with candidates seeking employment opportunities from companies that offer a strong employee value proposition and clear sense of purpose.
We remain committed to making CLS a great place to work and thanks to our purpose-driven strategy, robust people agenda and hybrid working approach, we have continued to attract, develop and engage high-performing colleagues across the globe.
Our focus on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) has evolved, with the introduction of a new affinity group – the Parents & Caregivers Network – joining our Women’s Forum, Black Employee Network and CLS Pride. These groups are employee-led, with support and sponsorship from senior leaders via the recently established CLS Diversity Council, which oversees all activity in this area and helps to facilitate positive developments to our culture through measurable goals and accountability. The various groups offer opportunities for connectivity between people across teams and regions, while also providing essential channels for their voices to be heard. As a result, our colleagues have access to a calendar of activities that mark and celebrate events including International Women’s Day, Black History Month, Pride and a wide range of cultural festivals and holidays.
We have maintained a relentless focus on employee wellbeing that builds on our response to the pandemic and the adoption of hybrid working – as evidenced by CLS being placed third in the Britain’s Healthiest Workplace initiative, run by Vitality. In addition to our Employee Assistance Program, our network of health and wellbeing champions oversee a range of supporting activities. Every month, we issue a ‘Pulse Check’ survey to gauge mood and morale and to get feedback from employees on issues that might be affecting them. This feedback has led to the delivery of a range of initiatives, including the repositioning of sick days as health days – a more proactive and inclusive approach to encouraging people to look after their wellbeing. We continue to issue monthly health and wellbeing guidance and goals, and in 2022 were pleased to introduce a network of mental health first aiders from within our own colleague community.
Externally, we strive to be a force for good in our local communities. Through monthly donation days and other fundraising activities, we have continued to support a number of local charities and with the easing of public health restrictions have seen an increase in the level of in-person volunteering by colleagues to support good causes.
As a result of our ongoing focus on providing a strong employee value proposition, we achieved a 92% favorability rating in our annual employee engagement survey, with 97% of respondents saying they would recommend CLS as a place to work.
Our position at the center of the FX market means we have a unique network of relationships and we will continue to engage with our industry partners to ensure we are all holding ourselves to the highest environmental standards, as we believe real results are achieved when each enterprise takes responsibility to address its own emissions and improve energy efficiency.
We will continue to build on our successes in these areas with improved coordination and consolidation of activity, organizing all facets of ESG participation into a more structured format. This will include setting goals and targets based on the areas of improvement we have identified, and will continue to be informed by developments in the ESG industry to guide us on future action.
Chief Risk Officer